Fallible Justice – Laura Laakso

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*I received a free proof copy of this book, with thanks to the author, and Louise Walters of Louise Walters Books.  The decision to review and my opinions are my own.*

 

fallible justice downloadBlurb:   In Old London, where paranormal races co-exist with ordinary humans, criminal verdicts delivered by the all-seeing Heralds of Justice are infallible. After a man is declared guilty of murder and sentenced to death, his daughter turns to private investigator Yannia Wilde to do the impossible and prove the Heralds wrong.

Yannia has escaped a restrictive life in the Wild Folk conclave where she was raised, but her origins mark her as an outsider in the city. Those origins lend her the sensory abilities of all of nature. Yet Yannia is lonely and struggling to adapt to life in the city. The case could be the break she needs. She enlists the help of her only friend, a Bird Shaman named Karrion, and together they accept the challenge of proving a guilty man innocent. 

So begins a breathless race against time and against all conceivable odds. Can Yannia and Karrion save a man who has been judged infallibly guilty?

 

I love love love this book.  I cannot tell you how much I love this book… er, except that I’m going to try, of course!

Fallible Justice is an urban fantasy murder mystery, in which the main character is a private investigator but also one of the Wild Folk, and out of her natural environment trying to survive the big city.

The worldbuilding is amazing, as we are introduced to a wide variety of mages, shamans, spirits and fae, all with their own distinct powers, personalities and scents (one of Yannia’s special gifts).  The setting and background information on this fantasy world is filtered in naturally through plot and dialogue so I felt that I was living in Old London myself, and was disappointed to surface and find I wasn’t!

I loved all of the side characters, especially Karrion, Wishearth and Lady Bergamon, but even some of the shadier sorts.  Yannia herself was an immediately engaging main character and I loved that while she suffers from a chronic genetic illness (Ehlers-Danlos syndrome) and had an open approach to sexuality (perhaps pansexuality from the information in the text, although it isn’t directly specified), neither of these aspects of her character are essential to the plot and they do not define her.  Her sexuality and illness are, like her magic and her preference for a simple lifestyle, just that – aspects of a complex whole person.

There was clearly a story behind Yannia’s move from her home to Old London which is hinted at throughout this story, and the cliffhanger ending suggests that this history may form some of the basis for the next book in the series.

The murder mystery plot in this instalment is gripping and fast-paced, with a deadline of just four days to prove a guilty man innocent and an infallible justice system fallible.  There were some twists and turns along the way, and one particular shock which I, like the character, should have seen coming but didn’t!  The whole setup with the Heralds and Paladins forming their own magical-being justice system is fascinating and I hope this will be developed further in the future.

On the whole, this was right up my street.  It had magic of all flavours, murder most mysterious, a sniff of sex and romance, fantastic well-rounded characters and a twisty-tight plot.  I can’t praise it enough and am desperate for the next book in the series already!

 

The woman from earlier is leaning against the bonnet of a black Mercedes, eyes glued to her phone.  She does not look up until I disengage the central locking of my car and she appears startled by my silent approach.The phone disappears into the pocket of her jacket and she pushes herself off the bonnet to face me.
At first, I think she is human, but then I catch the scents of frost, moss and autumn leaves.  A North Mage.  Interesting.  Mages are far more likely to wield their magic in libraries or laboratories than on a deserted beach.  As much as there is a stereotype about uncultured Wild Folk living in forests, so there is one about North Mages occupying lofty towers that bring them close to wide open skies and the power behind weather patterns.

– Laura Laakso, Fallible Justice

 

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For more from Laura Laakso, check out her website here or follow her on FacebookTwitter and Goodreads.

Fallible Justice releases on 8th November 2018, but you can preorder it on Amazon right now!

 

 

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